Atypical antipsychotic drugs, quetiapine, iloperidone, and melperone, preferentially increase dopamine and acetylcholine release in rat medial prefrontal cortex: role of 5-HT1A receptor agonism

Brain Res. 2002 Nov 29;956(2):349-57. doi: 10.1016/s0006-8993(02)03570-9.


Preferential increases in both cortical dopamine (DA) and acetylcholine (ACh) release have been proposed to distinguish the atypical antipsychotic drugs (APDs) clozapine, olanzapine, risperidone and ziprasidone from typical APDs such as haloperidol. Although only clozapine and ziprasidone are directly acting 5-HT(1A) agonists, WAY100635, a selective 5-HT(1A) antagonist, partially attenuates these atypical APD-induced increases in cortical DA release that may be due to combined 5-HT(2A) and D(2) blockade. However, WAY100635 does not attenuate clozapine-induced cortical ACh release. The present study determined whether quetiapine, iloperidone and melperone, 5-HT(2A)/D(2) antagonist atypical APDs, also increase cortical DA and ACh release, and whether these effects are related to 5-HT(1A) agonism. Quetiapine (30 mg/kg), iloperidone (1-10 mg/kg), and melperone (3-10 mg/kg) increased DA and ACh release in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Iloperidone (10 mg/kg) and melperone (10 mg/kg), but not quetiapine (30 mg/kg), produced an equivalent or a smaller increase in DA release in the nucleus accumbens (NAC), respectively, compared to the mPFC, whereas none of them increased ACh release in the NAC. WAY100635 (0.2 mg/kg), which alone did not affect DA or ACh release, partially attenuated quetiapine (30 mg/kg)-, iloperidone (10 mg/kg)- and melperone (10 mg/kg)-induced DA release in the mPFC. WAY100635 also partially attenuated quetiapine (30 mg/kg)-induced ACh release in the mPFC, but not that induced by iloperidone (10 mg/kg) or melperone (10 mg/kg). These results indicate that quetiapine, iloperidone and melperone preferentially increase DA release in the mPFC, compared to the NAC via a 5-HT(1A)-related mechanism. However, 5-HT(1A) agonism may be important only for quetiapine-induced ACh release.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholine / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Antipsychotic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Butyrophenones / pharmacology
  • Clozapine / pharmacology
  • Dibenzothiazepines / pharmacology
  • Dopamine / metabolism*
  • Haloperidol / pharmacology
  • Isoxazoles / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Microdialysis
  • Nucleus Accumbens / drug effects
  • Nucleus Accumbens / metabolism
  • Piperidines / pharmacology
  • Prefrontal Cortex / drug effects*
  • Prefrontal Cortex / metabolism*
  • Quetiapine Fumarate
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Receptors, Serotonin / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Serotonin, 5-HT1


  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Butyrophenones
  • Dibenzothiazepines
  • Isoxazoles
  • Piperidines
  • Receptors, Serotonin
  • Receptors, Serotonin, 5-HT1
  • Quetiapine Fumarate
  • Clozapine
  • Haloperidol
  • metylperon
  • Acetylcholine
  • iloperidone
  • Dopamine